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It's New Year's Day in Stack Exchange land...

A distinguishing characteristic of these sites is how they are moderated:

We designed the Stack Exchange network engine to be mostly self-regulating, in that we amortize the overall moderation cost of the system across thousands of teeny-tiny slices of effort contributed by regular, everyday users.
-- A Theory of Moderation

While there certainly are Moderators here, a significant amount of the moderation is done by ordinary people, using the privileges they've earned by virtue of their contributions to the site. Each of you contributes a little bit of time and effort, and together you accomplish much.

As we enter a new year, let's pause and reflect, taking a moment to appreciate the work that we do here together. And what could be more festive than a big pile of numbers? So here is a breakdown of moderation actions performed on Unix & Linux over the past 12 months:

                  Action                  Moderators Community¹
----------------------------------------- ---------- ----------
Users suspended²                                  13         38
Users destroyed³                                  70          0
Users deleted                                     11          0
Users contacted                                   22          0
User suspensions lifted early                      1          0
Tasks reviewed⁴: Suggested Edit queue            685     11,520
Tasks reviewed⁴: Reopen Vote queue               154      2,223
Tasks reviewed⁴: Low Quality Posts queue       1,546      7,072
Tasks reviewed⁴: Late Answer queue               190      4,407
Tasks reviewed⁴: First Post queue                156     19,612
Tasks reviewed⁴: Close Votes queue               779     16,226
Tags merged                                        4          0
Tag synonyms proposed                              7          3
Tag synonyms created                               6          5
Tag highlight language set                         4          0
Revisions redacted                                17          0
Questions unprotected                              3          0
Questions reopened                               109         79
Questions protected                               11        156
Questions migrated                                77         94
Questions merged                                   2          0
Questions flagged⁵                                35      1,837
Questions closed                               1,651      3,426
Question flags handled⁵                          654      1,212
Posts unlocked                                     1         44
Posts undeleted                                   87        675
Posts locked                                       3        358
Posts deleted⁶                                 2,612     14,227
Posts bumped                                       0      8,612
Escalations to the Community Manager team         14          0
Comments undeleted                                60          0
Comments flagged                                  70      7,400
Comments deleted⁷                              6,142     20,037
Comment flags handled                          2,245      5,226
Answers flagged                                  231      6,504
Answer flags handled                           5,095      1,639
All comments on a post moved to chat              37          0

Footnotes

¹ "Community" here refers both to the membership of Unix & Linux without diamonds next to their names, and to the automated systems otherwise known as user #-1.

² The system will suspend users under three circumstances: when a user is recreated after being previously suspended, when a user is recreated after being destroyed for spam or abuse, and when a network-wide suspension is in effect on an account.

³ A "destroyed" user is deleted along with all that they had posted: questions, answers, comments. Generally used as an expedient way of getting rid of spam.

⁴ This counts every review that was submitted (not skipped) - so the 2 suggested edits reviews needed to approve an edit would count as 2, the goal being to indicate the frequency of moderation actions. This also applies to flags, etc.

⁵ Includes close flags (but not close or reopen votes).

⁶ This ignores numerous deletions that happen automatically in response to some other action.

⁷ This includes comments deleted by their own authors (which also account for some number of handled comment flags).

Further reading:

Wishing you all a happy new year...

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Here are the numbers for this year (with Shog9's very slight late adjustments not taken into account), compared to the numbers for last year (because why not?). The last two columns are the differences from last year's "Moderators" and "Community" numbers. A value less than zero indicates a decrease.

Action                                     Moderators  Community
-----------------------------------------  ----------  ----------
Users suspended                            13          38          7     10
Users destroyed                            70          0           12    0
Users deleted                              11          0           -38   0
Users contacted                            22          0           14    0
User suspensions lifted early              1           0           -1    0
Tasks reviewed: Suggested Edit queue       685         11,520      388   -2136
Tasks reviewed: Reopen Vote queue          154         2,223       -86   -2291
Tasks reviewed: Low Quality Posts queue    1,546       7,072       1440  -6372
Tasks reviewed: Late Answer queue          190         4,407       149   -1022
Tasks reviewed: First Post queue           156         19,612      -32   -1830
Tasks reviewed: Close Votes queue          779         16,226      219   -13569
Tags merged                                4           0           1     0
Tag synonyms proposed                      7           3           4     -4
Tag synonyms created                       6           5           3     3
Tag highlight language set                 4           0           3     0
Revisions redacted                         17          0           5     0
Questions unprotected                      3           0           3     -1
Questions reopened                         109         79          -25   -100
Questions protected                        11          156         5     9
Questions migrated                         77          94          -2    -81
Questions merged                           2           0           -4    0
Questions flagged                          35          1,837       12    -654
Questions closed                           1,651       3,426       522   -3637
Question flags handled                     654         1,218       66    -708
Posts unlocked                             1           44          -7    -37
Posts undeleted                            87          675         37    -109
Posts locked                               3           358         -6    -146
Posts deleted                              2,612       14,227      314   548
Posts bumped                               0           8,612       0     -115
Escalations to the Community Manager team  14          0           -6    0
Comments undeleted                         60          0           -47   0
Comments flagged                           70          7,400       64    -479
Comments deleted                           6,142       20,037      -554  416
Comment flags handled                      2,244       5,226       -926  511
Answers flagged                            231         6,504       178   -2010
Answer flags handled                       5,094       1,641       162   -1994
All comments on a post moved to chat       37          0           2     0

It is obviously clear that "Community" has been less active in moderation-related activities under 2019 than under 2018, especially when it comes to looking after the review queues.

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  • My primary platform for using the site these days is my phone. It's disappointing that the phone app doesn't give me access to the review queues. Otherwise I'd happily do more reviewa of edits, close votes, first posts, etc. – filbranden Jan 3 at 5:27
  • 1
    I often check in using a mobile browser, and look at the review queues that way as well. – Jeff Schaller Jan 3 at 20:35
  • To what extent does the decrease in community participation reflect the “promotion” of two of its most active members to moderators? – Stephen Kitt Jan 4 at 13:17
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    @StephenKitt It may have a tiny effect, but Jeff's done 8605 close vote reviews over all (currently), and I've only done a measly 1651, so it's not just us. Besides, I believe these numbers are declining for sites like StackOverflow as well. – Kusalananda Jan 4 at 13:22
  • ""Community" has been less active in moderation related activities", well yes, but it actually shows fewer posts have been flagged for possible closure (Community is down 13K but Mods are only up 200), and actual closure (Community down 3.5K but Mods only up 522). What I'd really like to see is Questions by year and Answers by year because I wonder if that has dropped significantly 2018 to 2019 too. – roaima Jan 9 at 20:48
  • @roaima SEDE has others, I'm sure, but here's one: data.stackexchange.com/unix/query/161411/… – Jeff Schaller Jan 18 at 3:43
  • @JeffSchaller thank you. I'd forgotten about SEDE. – roaima Jan 18 at 9:49

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